2021 is turning out to be a fantastic year… for publishing. In this series of blog posts, we want to highlight the titles we at The Portobello Bookshop are most excited about this year. Starting off with some of the best new hardback fiction coming in 2021, this list features well-known authors as well as debuts and books you may not have heard of yet but you should definitely check out.
Just a note that because this is a list of forthcoming titles, some purchases will be pre-orders and you will receive your books as they are published over the coming months.
Conservation of wildlife and habitats - Hardback
This is a book about abandoned places – ghost towns and exclusion zones, no man’s lands and fortress islands – and about what happens when nature is allowed to reclaim its place.
In Chernobyl, following the nuclear disaster, only a handful of people returned to their dangerously irradiated homes. On an uninhabited Scottish island, feral cattle live entirely wild. In Detroit, once America’s fourth-largest city, entire streets of houses are falling in on themselves, looters slipping through otherwise silent neighbourhoods.
This book explores the extraordinary places where humans no longer live – or survive in tiny, precarious numbers – to give us a glimpse of what happens when mankind’s impact on nature is forced to stop.
Creative writing and creative writing guides - Hardback
For the last twenty years, George Saunders has been teaching a class on the Russian short story to his MFA students at Syracuse University.
In A Swim in a Pond in the Rain, he shares a version of that class with us, offering some of what he and his students have discovered together over the years. Paired with iconic short stories by Chekhov, Turgenev, Tolstoy, and Gogol, the seven essays in this book are intended for anyone interested in how fiction works and why it is more relevant than ever in these turbulent times.
Theory of art - Hardback
Written in an era of thriving feminist theory, as well as queer theory, race and postcolonial studies, ‘Thirty Years After’ is a striking reflection on the emergence of a whole new canon. With reference to Joan Mitchell, Louise Bourgeois, Cindy Sherman and many more, Nochlin diagnoses the state of women in art with unmatched precision and verve.
Mixed heritage / mixed race groups or people - Hardback
Memoirs - Hardback
Kerri ni Dochartaigh was born in Derry, on the border of the North and South of Ireland, at the very height of the Troubles. She was brought up on a council estate on the wrong side of town. But for her family, and many others, there was no right side.
In Thin Places, a mixture of memoir, history and nature writing, Kerri explores how nature kept her sane and helped her heal, how violence and poverty are never more than a stone’s throw from beauty and hope, and how we are, once again, allowing our borders to become hard, and terror to creep back in.
Kerri asks us to reclaim our landscape through language and study, and remember that the land we fight over is much more than lines on a map. It will always be ours but, at the same time, it never really was.View Product
Colonialism and imperialism - Hardback
Child care and upbringing: advice for parents - Hardback
How do you find hope and even joy in a world that is racist, sexist and facing a climate crisis? How do you prepare your children for it, but also fill them with all the boundlessness and eccentricity that they deserve and that life has to offer? In Brown Baby, Nikesh Shukla explores themes of racism, feminism, parenting and our shifting ideas of home. This memoir, by turns heart-wrenching, hilariously funny and intensely relatable, is dedicated to the author’s two young daughters, and serves as an act of remembrance to the grandmother they never had a chance to meet.
Through themes such as love, grief, food and fatherhood, Shukla shows how it’s possible to believe in hope.View Product
Environmental science, engineering and technology - Hardback
Preorder - Hardback